Love Island contestant Yewande Biala says being black in the media means “you have to be 10 times better than everyone else”.
The 23-year-old scientist from Dublin has been speaking to 1Xtra Talks about life outside the villa.
Yewande was part of the original villa line up this year, but left the show after failing to find love.
She says: “When I got into this I realised being black is hard, but being black and in the media is harder.
“You have to stand out and you have to do more and it can get quite frustrating.
“You feel like you’re not doing enough, but just keep pushing to keep doing what you’re doing and someone will see how amazing you are.”
Yewande also said when it came to finding love in the villa it proved so difficult due to the colour of her skin.
Speaking about being on Love Island with other candidates like winner Amber Gill, who is mixed race and Anna Vakili, who’s Iranian, she says “we all struggled”.
“We didn’t find anyone who liked us. It was always someone coming in and saying ‘my type is blonde and petite’.
“We’d just look at each other and say ‘they’re obviously not here for us’.”
Yewande also tells the programme about coming out the villa and trying to cope with the pressures of social media.
She says “the majority of people were super supportive” in public social media comments, but that she did receive some offensive direct messages.
“When I came back from Mallorca I got such a tan. I was so dark but I loved it.
“And people would come to me like, ‘Oh you’re too dark, like why are you so dark? Why are you so black, you’re too skinny’. It was just stupid.”
Yewande was also asked about her main storyline in the villa, which involved a love triangle with contestants Danny Williams and Arabella Chi.
When Danny chose Arabella over Yewande, she says the articles that appeared online about her portrayed a tired stereotype used against black women.
“I tried not to read any articles about myself because I didn’t want to get upset.
“I think they were trying to label me as the angry black woman, which was kind of insane.
“Not once in the villa did I ever raise my voice or feel like I acted in that way, even considering the circumstances I was in.”
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